As usual, this post is an edited version of my tweets from the event. My asides are in blockquotes. Most links are to Twitter presences.
Good afternoon Twitter. I’m at the Practical Democracy Project number 8, in Glasgow’s Tron Theatre. It’s organised by Delib, and has hashtag #PracticalDemocracyProject. I hope to live-tweet so long as my laptop’s battery holds out.
Yesterday I was at Delib‘s Practical Democracy project session 8 in Glasgow. I’ll blog about the event later. However, after several months of almost no exercise, I decided to cycle back to Edinburgh.
Usually, there is a tailwind when cycling this way. However, there was a strong headwind. That partly explains why I took over four hours peddling (over 6 hours including stops) to cycle 43 miles, why my phone’s battery went flat after 35 miles, why I took drink and toilet-breaks every 10 miles, and why my leg-muscles turned to cast iron before I got home. However, most of the explanation is I am a fat, unfit git.
The last thing I need after spending an extra night and lots of extra money is more hassle. So that’s what I got: my hold bag has not arrived in Edinburgh.
The office at the baggage hall doesn’t handle FlyBumble baggage issues, I’m told after waiting 20 minutes, so I should go to the Swissport desk, which is outside the baggage hall. I won’t be able to get back in if I leave the hall. Swissport have 3 staff on duty but only one is handling FlyBumble issues. She is occupied dealing with a couple whose medication has gone awol. Eventually they leave very dissatisfied
I understand why when I’m told my bag is on a later flight, due to ‘failure to present’. Something in the staff-member’s tone implies this is my fault, so I ask what I did wrong. Apparently nothing, just that my bag didn’t arrive at my flight in time to be loaded on it. I’m not surprised: my flight to Manchester was late arriving after a delayed take-off at Schiphol.
I’m told that while my bag might be delivered to my home this evening, this isn’t guaranteed. It might be delivered tomorrow morning. I am sweaty, sleep-deprived, in pain and not in a good mood. You have been warned!
I woke around 9am again, staggered to breakfast, and then crashed out again.
I next woke around 3pm, did some shopping, had lunch and then came back to my hotel to blog. You’re reading the results. It’s now 10:40. So I have not done any democracy events today. So sue me – this trip is meant to be a holiday! Part of being away from work (both academic and local democracy) is catching up on sleep. Nighty-night!
I woke around 8am UK time, with a stinking hangover. Not fair! I’d not drunk any alcohol. I finally found the online programme for today’s DemocracyAlive! events. I don’t mean it wasn’t online before, just that I’d not made time to read it before now. I decided on going to these events:
What public services for the future? Digital Transformation and Low-carbon economy
(12 noon to 1pm)
Festival launch (2pm to 3pm)
[Koffiepauze (3pm to 4pm)]
Democracy as a culture (4pm to 6pm)
Talking Europe with Commissioner Vestager (6pm to 7pm)
Talking Europe with Michel Barnier (7pm to 8pm)
Here’s how I got on, mostly recalled from tweets, texts and emails I sent at the time.
In 2015, the First Minister conﬁrmed that the Scottish Government would be one of the ﬁrst anywhere in the world to commit to meeting the UN Global Goals for Sustainable Development, both at home and overseas. Since then, all 193 UN member states have signed up to the 17 goals that seek to end poverty, fight inequalities and tackle climate change. Continue reading →
Everyone else is having their say, so why shouldn’t I?
Full disclosure, in case I’ve not made it clear: I think Brexit is a mind-bogglingly stupid thing to do. This doesn’t mean I see myself as superior to those who did vote for Brexit… hang about a bit, yes it does! I sympathise with anyone who believes that the EU has harmed them personally, but this does not give you the right to stuff it up for everyone else.I have slightly more sympathy with those who believe that the EU has harmed a majority of the UK – at least that is altruistic in aim, although it’s harmful in outcome.
I have no sympathy for anyone who believes that any group of foreigners – or even all foreigners – are bad or evil. Anyone who believes that is wrong and evil. And as for those who brought about Brexit thanks to attempts to solve problems in their own party party, may the fleas of a million camels eternally chew on your scrotum!
Rant over for the moment. Having said what I’m against, what am I for? That’s a difficult question to answer just now… Continue reading →